News Reporter

News reporters gather information about newsworthy events in order to write stories for publication or broadcast.

News media broadly fall into two categories and reporters generally specialise in one or the other:

  • Print media; which includes newspapers and magazines
  • Digital publishing on the World Wide Web and broadcast media; which covers radio and television
Reporters usually start out by reporting on general news, such as court cases or crime. As experience is gained they move on to specialised areas such as sport or politics. News reporting offers a wide range of possibilities, depending on the individual’s temperament. One option is the high pressure ‘buzz’ of a daily newspaper, or feature writing for magazines; alternatively sub-editing and layout or even broadcast reporting from war zones (if action is what you really want).

How to Enter

Schooling & School Subjects

  • National Senior Certificate meeting degree requirements for a degree course
  • National Senior Certificate meeting diploma requirements for a diploma course
Each institution has its own entry requirements.

What to Study

Degree: BA Journalism or Journalism and Media Studies or Communication Studies / Science - UJ, NWU, UZ, UFS, UFH, UCT, US, RU, UZ, Monash, UKZN, NMMU, UNISA, UP, Wits.

Diploma: N.Dip: Journalism - CUT, TUT, CPUT.
An academic background is preferred but is not essential. The training of a journalist can be divided into two categories: career orientated programmes and broad communication courses. A tertiary student is trained within the career-orientated programmes where theoretical training is combined with practical training.

In-service training is also offered by some employers


  • daily or weekly newspapers
  • niche market magazines
  • specialised trade journals in numerous fields
  • large corporations, e.g. in-house newspaper, annual reports, etc.
  • television channels
  • radio stations
  • self-employment, with freelance work

Further Information

South African Journalists’ Association
POSTNET Suite 530
Private Bag X113
Melville, 2109
41 A Frost Road
Milpark, 2109
Tel: (011) 716-1308 Fax: (011) 716-5647

The Head, Recruitment, SABC, eTV, M-Net

Getting Started

  • try to obtain vacation or part-time work with a newspaper or radio station
  • arrange to speak to a news reporter about this type of career

Programmes by Study Institutions

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